Wanted to get some /lit/ opinions on Bukowski. I sort of disregarded Bukowski after reading Post Office (which was fine but felt a bit gimmicky) and seeing so many of his quotes as sort of "anti-motivational" memes on Facebook walls.
However, I thought Ham on Rye was great and really gave a lot more substance to the Chinaski character, meanwhile showcasing Bukowski's ability as a writer beyond "AW FUCK I'M LATE FOR WORK SUCK MY DICK BABY."
Basically, should I bother with Factotum or Women?
Excellent discussion! What didn't you like about it? I felt like it's the sort of story that's often imitated by your psuedo-beatnik creative writing majors. That said, it was definitely enjoyable at times.
He's my favorite author. I especially love Post Office because of the humor & its relentless dedication to detailing the hellish life of the working man. I have a lot of his poetry books too. Hell, Bukowski even inspired me to become a writer.
I thought that the writing was very bad and that Bukowski tried very hard to be "too cool for school!" Honestly I think I would've loved it in high school, maybe early college years as well. I just don't find that attitude appealing anymore. Most people I know that really love Bukowski are extremely insecure and self-loathing and use this totally fake "fuck it" mentality to try and seem cool.
I actually have to modify that last comment in my original post, though. Bukowski's novels suck dick, but I do like some of his poetry.
Feel about the same. I first read his poetry, that was touching at times.I truly believe is the last great romantic poet. His novels are mildly entertaining, I think notes of dirty old man is great
Bukowski sucks. Not only that he has no writing skills, but his works have no substance too. In spite of these, he is famous and this is not quite surprsing. It's only due to the fact that his books come as a shock. They are so sincere, that they keep your attention. That, ofc,if you are a fan of vampire books or other useless shits. Bukowski is like a disgusting man who climbs a bulding and starts to scream something that has no sense. Stupid people would fall for him, would pay him attention, would FUCKING LISTEN TO WHAT HE IS SAYING, just because he had courage, something they have not. But a smart one would just laugh, call him a fagg and simply walk away. That's because he knows he is talking bullshit.
Again, I don't think he's anything mindblowing but Ham on Rye at least gave some context to why Chinaski is Chinaski. And again, I think he is often imitated which probably frustrates those who are constantly bombarded by such imitations.
I think the "fuck it" mentality was also a turn-off for me; however, understanding its context in Bukowski's work gives you something to think about. Anyone who's so easily impressionable to attach themselves to such a mentality has their own set of problems. It's like some dude reading Hemingway and deciding to become a streetfighter who eats roots and pounds rum in an effort to "live by the code."
I will say, though, I do get annoyed at the Bukowski quotes that pop up in NEET threads.
Yeah, Bukowski is much more tolerable when you consider the context he wrote his work under. His entire "fuck it" mentality becomes understandable once you realize the circumstances he grew up in and the unwanted mundanity of his adult years.
His work does become infuriating when people start posting his quotes and claiming things such as "This is how life really is, man. Bukowski got it right," even though there is no reason for them to possess any views that are similar to Bukowski's.
Exactly. The first time I heard of Bukowski was through two hipsters at my university. Both creative writing majors supported by their parents, spouting the "Bukowski got it right." The hate is somewhat understood but I think that most of those people don't give him a chance, which I admit I really hadn't until Ham on Rye.
Women has some very realistic depictions of what's going on in the mind during sex.
Really though, I don't get why Bukowski is so famous these days. At college, I heard him get brought up by hipster chicks even more than Kurt Vonnegut which really doesn't make sense to me considering their intense SJW sensibilities. I brought him up in a conversation with a professor once and quickly backpedaled out of it when I realized how embrassing it was to bring him up.
I don't think he's bad or anything, but it is kinda hard for me to summarize his work beyond "LETS FUCK!"